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Exploring the Road to Hana

When Greg Anderson said “focus on the journey, not the destination, for joy is found not in finishing an activity but in doing it” he must have been talking about Maui’s Hana Highway, aka The Road to Hana. Without a doubt the most famous drive in all of Hawaii, the slow, winding road takes you through miles of lush scenery, waterfalls and picturesque views.

To get to Hana Highway, go back past the airport to Hwy 36 and continue east until it turns into Hwy 360. Once that happens, reset your odometer to 0. This way you’ll be able to follow along with the mile marker notes we’ve listed below. If you start early enough you can do the drive in one day without missing the major attractions along the drive.  But, with so many miles of beauty, what are some can’t-miss places to stop?  Read on to find out…

The Garden of Eden

Location: Mile Marker 10

Despite the $10 per person entrance fee, this gorgeous, well-maintained botanical garden is one of the can’t miss stops on the Road to Hana.. The vegetation is lush and well labeled.and there are picnic areas with great views and restrooms. Truly a tropical paradise. For their hours and other information, call (808) 572-9899.

Puohokamoa Falls

Location:  8/10 mile past mile marker 10, turnout with a telephone pole on oceanside of the road

There’s a path here you’ll need to take for a couple of minutes, but the view of the 200’ falls is amazing.  Most people don’t know about this little path, so chances are you’ll have it all to yourself.

Haipua'ena Falls

Location: 1/2 mile past Mile Marker 11 A half mile past Mile Marker 11

There’s a small turnout on the far side of the bridge with a trail that leads about a minute to a pool and small waterfall. Very pretty.

Kaumahina State Wayside Park

Location: Mile Marker 12

This is a great place to do a short nature walk, have a picnic under the eucalyptus trees, use the restroom and take pictures of the coastline's panoramic view.

Pua'a Ka'a State Wayside Park

Location:  Between mile markers 22 & 23

Here you’ll find a serene picnic area across a stream with two small waterfalls and a pool, making for a great photo op. There are restrooms available here, too

Helele'ike'oha Falls

Location:  Mile Marker 31

If you’ve ever wanted to swim under a towering waterfall, this is your chance. Better known as the Blue Pool, a short walk offers a stunning waterfall with a swimming pool that faces the ocean. To get there, just before Mile Marker 31 take a left on Ula'ino Road and at the very end of this unpaved road are parking spaces for the beach access. Walk towards the left about 200 yards along the rocky shoreline and the Blue Pool is on the left.

Red Sand Beach

Location: Hana town

Once you arrive in Hana you’ll definitely want to check out one of the most unique beaches on the island: the Red Sand Beach. Though the swimming isn’t great, the beach’s vibrant red sand definitely makes for some great photos.  To get there, park on Uakea near Hauoli. Just before the Sea Ranch Cottages at the Hotel Hana Maui there’s a large lawn on the left side of the road. Look past the second lamp post on the right for a path leading downhill. Continue straight down, taking a left just before the shore. It’s not as tricky as it sounds. All in all it’s about a 5-minute walk.

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